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Fractal Design Define Mini mATX Computer Case

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Fractal Design Define Silent PC Cases Define Mini Black Computer Case
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Product Reviews

Fractal Design Define Mini mATX Computer Case
Very Good
Below Average
Rating: 8.88/10
With 16 User Reviews

Review Date: 05/25/13
Cons: Rather have the included fan controller on the front but it's no big deal

Pros: Looks great!Awesome Build quality!Easy build
Great case to build in and the air flow is really good. Although I can hear my loud gpu, it reduces the noise a lot. I'd recommend this case to anyone who is thinking of building a M-atx.

Review Date: 02/06/13
Cons: plastic parts have cheap look and feel to it.

Pros: somewhat well thought out case internals, heavy
looks good from a distance, but fails the 2ft test due to cheap looking plastic. this case does it well 80% of the way, but then fails at the end giving an overall crappy look. if you are going for a nice case, then you want 100%, not 80% nice.

Review Date: 01/03/13
Cons: Not As silent as I was expectingExtremely short Reset cableHDD Trays (not really a problem, but they're not tool-less)Loose grommets in the cable management system.

Pros: Great styleUSB 3HDD Trays (I like the removable rack for airflow)Looks good from the inside outCable tray in back is fairly roomyFan Controller comes with it, plus mount options.
I recently bought this case for a new build for one of my parents. Earlier in the year I had bought the ATX-sized midtower on special and fell in love with the looks. I still haven't used that case in a build yet, but I knew from reviews and having one in my posession that it was a look I wanted for my mom's next PC.Overall, it's a great case, well built and durable. I haven't noticed any paint flecks yet even on the grooves for the doors, so quality looks good there as well. The smaller case size compared to the R4 s also nice.Problems I have with it: The cabling for the front power buttons is all the correct length, except for the reset button. I noticed while building that these cables hung down a bit and were in the way for the top 5.25" bay. I thought maybe the reset cable was just twisted; but no, the cable is actually shorter than the rest. I had also built the system with an Eco Cool-it water cooler, and after the build I could hear a noticable hum from the unit.I had bought the premium case due to the silent nature of the case. I built with quality parts (Noctua fans set to low speed, Seasonic fanless PSU, etc) but found that I could still hear the water pump. For a premium price, I was expecting that this case would take care of all of the minimal noise from the low noise equipment I had put in. I was planning on rating this three stars.I now realize why I can still hear the hum from what should be one of the least noisy parts: vibration. The motherboard stands have no rubber grommets like the HDD trays, since the pump itself would vibrate more than a standard air-cooled system, it would make sense why this is still audible. No case that I'm aware of currently puts grommets on their motherboard stands meaning this isn't really an issue of the case being lacking, instead it being a side effect of water cooling.I've still taken the one star off for the other nagging issues of the system; namely the reset cable and HDD trays. Overall I would recommend getting this case, but not at full price.
S u P a D o N k E y@NCIX

Review Date: 12/12/12
Cons: Compared to Corsair 300R, same dimension except shorter heightCPU cutout is small

Pros: QualityRemovable HDD cageGood cable management
I initially installed Noctua D14 then I wanted to change it with CM Hyper Evo. Problem was that CPU cut out was not wide enough and I had to take out motherboard to change it. With removable HDD cage, I was able to install Sapphire 7970 which was apparently longer than Powercolor and XFX 7970...

Review Date: 07/26/12
Cons: PriceSomewhat cheap thin steel panels and frameSomewhat cheap painting job for white parts

Pros: Easy to work inVery silentEasy to clean out filters2x triple HDD cagesPartially removable HDD cageCable organization
What can I say? This is quite a good case.The layout is well thought out and has plenty of potential for almost any kind of build. Room for 6x HDDs, or more if you're creative, room for a massive graphics card, massive CPU cooler, grommets for water cooling tubes. Really, it has plenty of potential for a gaming machine, HTPC, SOHO or as a quite office machine. The downside, is that you get to choose only a few of those applications, as there are some size restrictions when you use, say a large graphics card that protrudes beyond the motherboard, which may interfere with the removable HDD cage.Speaking of size, this case is actually quite large and is about the same volumetric size as a smaller ATX case. Slightly shorter, but also slightly deeper.Moving along, we come to the build quality. It doesn't feel like a cheap case, but it also doesn't feel like a quality case. It actually feels a bit cheap, compared to say, antec NSK cases. The fit between panels and various parts is good, however every single one of them feels like it has been skimped on. The steel panels sure aren't as thick as the stuff used on antec cases. The white parts have some primer showing. Everything is "just enough" and "this will do". Plainly, it's built down to a price.And yet, it works! The case is sturdy and silent when fully assembled, all the filters are easy to get to and it's nice to work inside it.It looks great too, for a tool. It's not gaudy, the lines don't go everywhere and there are no ultra bright lights to bedazzle your neighbors. Definitely a page taken from antec performance series, which is a good thing.Definitely 4 stars. I'd give it 5, if it didn't feel like it was built cheaply and to a price point.

Review Date: 06/18/12
Cons: None

Pros: Sleek, compact, amazing cable management system and QUIET
Not sure of why the odd person is giving this 4/5 stars, as this is truly the best case I've ever owned, let alone seen. The 2 case fans that come with this unit are SILENT.I'm running a 7970 video card in here with both hard drive bays in without a problem, so lots of room. I also wanted a QUIET case, as I heard the fans on the 69x and 79x series of video cards can be quite loud. Well - My system is completely silent!The cable management system for this case is amazing! I opted for a non-modular gaming P/S, so I really was hoping for a decent cable management system. It's truly the best ever.I'm going to be ordering another one of these for my kids' PC as I'm so impressed with it.

Review Date: 04/02/12
Cons: No window.

Pros: Amazing build quality. All black interior. Excellent cable management. Sleek design.
This is an amazing case. I switched from a 650d to this and I couldn't be happier. The case can easily be modded for custom water cooling. It has amazing build quality for the price. Can't beat it anywhere else. Only thing this case is missing is a window.

Review Date: 03/15/12
Cons: none

Pros: QuietSharp looksDecent airflowGreat cable management
I bought this to use as a file server. Inside of it is a standard Pentium D 775 and it keeps it cool. The hard drive mounts are great and the grommets for cable management are perfect, they don't fall out for me like others have said. I will be buying a second for a build for my sister.

Review Date: 01/27/12
Cons: Sata connector too close to hd rack. Finish is easy to mark up. Blue light is a bit bright for my taste. Could use a bit more space behind motherboard for wiring. Wire passthrough grommets fall of very easily.

Pros: Very minimalistic, clean look. Good quality finish. Good quality dampening material. Quiet.
I really wanted the Silverstone TJ08-E. They didnt have it in stock and I really didnt want to wait on backorder. I took a chance on this case, and must say I am blown away. The price is right, the quality is exceptional at that price point. If you are on the fence, dont be, just get the case. It is worth evey penny I spent.

Review Date: 01/12/12
Cons: The rear panel can be hard to install when cables are fed through the back

Pros: Great cable management, easy to work with, lots of drive bays
This is my third Fractal case and all three have been a pleasure to work with. My home server is the larger one with 8 drive bays. The reason I bought this was because it's one of the most silent cases on the market. Put the covers on and you may be confused if it's on or not. Great purchase and would recommend it to others.

Review Date: 12/07/11
Cons: Inside scratches easily

Pros: Amazing sleek design.
Using this as my server (http://distilleryimage3.instagram.com/cb6dd7aa1f9c11e180c9123138016265_7.jpg) and 24/7 build. Love the sleekness of it, easy to hide somewhere. Like the simplicity, but it comes with lots of features as well. Probably the best case under 100 bucks that I have used.

Review Date: 11/09/11
Cons: None so far except it's a bit bigger than I thought it would be.

Pros: Quality, quality, quality
This has to be one of the nicest cases I have ever used, sound dampening foam, hard drive caddies mounted facing out that you can rotate for better air flow. Fan controller, comes with 2 fans, build quality is superb. Everything about this case is great, highly recommend it!

Review Date: 10/29/11
Cons: -Included fan controller will not start included or Gelid fans turning when set to the lower 1/3 speed level.-Grommets are cheap junk that come out easy and are very flimsy making it nearly impossible to put back on properly-Power LED is overly bright, lighting up my walls at night if computer is on. At least it makes a good night light or just disconnect it to solve that problem.-Hole for rear CPU access does not quite line up you'd have to bend a bit to access the screws properly or install the CPU mount first before installing the motherboard (not an issue for most AMD builds but an issue for an Intel system install)-You need tools for install of most items (at least includes a screw driver, a rather lousy small one) for the motherboard stand offs you will want a tool to tighten them does not have dust screens for covered side, top or uncovered back fan locations (however this case is front to back air flow design and bottom to top fan has dust screen every other fan should exhaust hot air out to prevent dust)-Rather large for an mATX case near the same size as an Antec Sonata III but I believe about 2 inches shorter height and just as long.-Case not as silent as expected-Rather heavy for size due to sound preventing materials used on size panels

Pros: -Sturdy-Fans are near silent, Gelid fans are about as silent as it gets but the case fans blow more air-mATX but can fit full sized video cards-Removable hard drive tray gives more room for air flow and allows even larger video card than what exists at this time-Fairly good air flow and fan options-Great build quality-Sweet looking case, easy to install into without instructions-Can fit large after market CPU coolers like my "Zalman CNPS 10X Extreme"-Wires can be run through the back side panel area of case to free up air flow and hide what could have been a mess of wires-One front USB connector with cable to run to a USB 3 enabled motherboard-Has dust screens at the front and base of computer case-Need tools for install, the case includes a small (but rather lousy) screw driver. However a tool design is generally the more secure way to go to prevent buzzing and hum sounds-Has rubber feet on hard drive mounts for sound prevention
This is a great case especially for gamers with the odd hiccup. If I had to choose what case to buy for my mATX gaming rig I would still choose this computer case over any other mATX build.The grommets coming out of place is a bit of a pain however the cut outs are rounded metal and not sharp so you are safe to remove them. If using the included fan controller if wanting to use a low setting watch that your case fans are turn at the first few start ups to determine the min speed you can securely know your case fans are actually turning.This case is rather heavy for it's size however I've had heavier mid tower Cooler master cases that are in the same price range. The sound dampening materials used help to prevent buzz, hum, give the case a more solid feel and seems to do wonders with blocking hard drive noise... In my case a Toshiba 2gig 7200RPM.In my situation I had to change my fan on my CPU cooler and a nut came lose on the mounts for my after market cooler requiring me to have to access the back panel to re-attach the nut. I had to actually bend the metal a bit to get the bottom bracket bolt off... goodbye warranty and minus 1 star for this over sight in case design. I could have got the bracket off but I could have very likely would have had a very difficult time not having the thumb screw type nut fall between the motherboard and the case. This would have been a danger to power the system without frying the motherboard if not taken out.This case is too good to give only give 3 stars, most the cons are very minor issues. Lets call this 3.75 stars due to the fan controller issue as listed in the cons and the back side CPU access issue which only effects Intel system builds in most cases.

Review Date: 10/05/11
Cons: - Fans are crap: The ones I got both made low grinding noises. This is never ok, but especially disappointing in a quiet case. Don't know if they were both defective, or that's normal (fixed with some Gelid silent fans).- Sleeved fan cables: The sleeve job is crap (like all pre sleeved). Only good if you're too lazy to sleeve.- No sound foam on top (other than over the optional fan cutout). Would have been a perfect place.- Grommets tend to come out if you force some fatty cables through them.- Extensions and adapters to use fan controller aren't sleeved- Power LED on top/front is relatively large/bright and doubles as the HDD activity LED (i.e., it flickers constantly). Solution: mine is unplugged.- You can't remove the front intake filters to clean them. You need to unscrew 4 screws and remove the entire fan housing (You'll probably just wipe the front off and not need to do this though)- The removable front panel contains all the wiring for the front panel. A lot of cases with a removable front panel leave the connections on the front of the case so you can remove the panel and not worry about cables. As this one is, if you route/zip tie your front panel cables you won't be able to take your front panel off, or will only be able to move it 1 or 2 inches away from the case (I had some slack, so the latter was the case with me).- 5.25" bays aren't tooless

Pros: - Quiet* (See Cons)- Sleek, minimalist design- Ease of installation- Grommeted routing holes* (see Cons)- Black front panel cables- Sleeved fan cables* (see Cons)- Dense sound foam on side panels and heavy steel (a single panel is insanely hefty - kills noise)- Nice matte finish (sort of rough and textured, doesn't eat up finger prints)- All intakes are dust filtered* (see Cons)
Overall, this is the classiest, and one of the nicest, cases I've ever built in. My cons are all minor gripes, overshadowed by this case's sex appeal, ease of installation, and general awesomeness. The only reason I have those cons is that the case maintains such a high overall standard, making slight failings all the more apparent.As others have noted, this case is quite roomy for a "micro" tower. It's as deep as a standard mid, and only a bit shorter. The flip side of this is that it's a roomy build, and even has routing holes for the CPU power above the MOBO.All done up with a modest i3 system sporting a GTX 460 this baby is whisper quiet - and heavy for its size (those thick materials). All this sweetness for a mere $100 - buy one now.

Review Date: 09/19/11
Cons: Large for a mATX case

Pros: Very good build qualityGood fansIncluded fan controllerIncludes filters
Overall a very nice case. Very quiet with the fans that included, which is perfect for a quiet office. The case is very close in size to the R3, but seems to be designed more like a small version of the Define XT moreso than the R3. The first thing I noticed that seem to give the case more height than needed are the case feet. They seem to be about twice the height of the ones on the R3.

Review Date: 09/07/11
Cons: - Screws on front fan hard to remove

Pros: - Good build quality- Good Value
Was impressed with the quality but was disappointed as this wasn't much smaller then other mid towers that can take full atx.When trying to add additional front fan it took a lot of work to remove the screws to add it. [You need to remove them to clean the filters also]Other then that its a great case.
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Product Features

Product Specifications

BrandFractal Design
SeriesDefine Silent PC Cases
ModelDefine Mini
TypeMicroATX Mini Tower
Case MaterialSteel
With Power SupplyNo
Power Supply MountedBottom
Motherboard CompatibilityMini ITX, Micro ATX
With Side Panel WindowNo
External 5.25" Drive Bays2 (with one 5.25 > 3.5 inch converter included)
External 3.5" Drive Bays1 (Convert from 5.25" bay)
Internal 3.5" Drive Bays6 (Compatible with SSD)
Expansion Slots4 x Fractal accent white painted brackets
1 x Additional Bonus Slot for fan controller or other applications.
Front Ports
Front Ports1 x USB 3.0, 2 x USB 2.0 and Audio I/O ports
Cooling System
120mm Fans2 x 120 mm Fractal Design fans included
1 x 120mm - front, 1 x 120/140mm - top, 1 x 120/140mm - side panel, 1 x 120mm - bottom (optional)
Side Air ductYes
Physical Spec
Dimensions(L x W x H)19.29" x 8.27" x 15.55"
Weight20.94 lbs.
FeaturesStunning Aluminum look Front Panel design

ModuVent System allows the user the option to have unrivaled silence or optimal airflow

Pre-fitted with dense noise absorbing material

Sleek black interior with Fractal black and white signature colors

Fan Controller for 3 fans included

Upper HDD cage is removable and rotatable

Intelligent cable management system

Larger opening in M/B tray to support large CPU coolers

Supports CPU Coolers with height of 165mm

Supports graphics card lengths up to 260mm when removable upper HDD-bay is in place

Supports graphic cards with lengths up to 400mm when upper HDD-bay is removed

Supports PSU's with a maximum depth of 170mm, when using bottom 120/140mm fan location. When not using the bottom 120/140mm fan location, the case supports also longer PSU's up to 200-220mm

Extra, vertically mounted expansion slot, suitable for fan controllers or non-input expansion cards
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